Cobargo couple Glenn and Kim Scrymgeour had just finished eating breakfast when their nine-week-old pet dog signalled something wasn't right.
Within minutes a bushfire, which eye-witnesses claim began on powerlines near the property, was working its way quickly towards them.
"It was cold, and we were sitting around," Mr Scrymgeour said as he looked over the remnants of his family's cabin, which was completely destroyed by Saturday's bushfire.
"We'd had some breakfast and our cattle dog was sniffing around. It started freaking out, and I wondered what was wrong with it.
"I smelt smoke and went outside. I called the firies and within 15 minutes the fire came over the hill."
"I told Kim we had to go because there was fire at the window. At that stage we didn't know if the whole town would burn.
"It just rained fire," the 55-year-old said.
The September 7 fire burnt through 100 hectares of grassland and bush before being brought under control by firefighters late on Saturday. Of the couple's 30ha property, just two remained untouched by the fire.
By the time the fire was out, pieces of melted corrugated iron lay draped over the cabin's foundations like sheets of cloth. Meanwhile, a plastic clothes peg lay in the dust seemingly untouched by the heat.
"It's only a building, and we're still here," Mr Scrymgeour said.
The cabin was the family home for 30 years, with the couple's three now adult children raised on the property. Amazingly, thanks to the help of friends and family, the couple's larger but unfinished home being built just metres up the hill still stands.
Mr Scrymgeour said without the help of the community, the unfinished home would also have been destroyed. Many people have also helped the couple create a makeshift living area, and they have also been offered free temporary accommodation at a Quaama bed and breakfast.
He said he can't help but think about what may have happened if he had not been home with his wife, who was diagnosed with multiple myeloma three years ago, on that tragic day.
"I'm just glad I wasn't at the footy in Eden. I think about that at least a couple of times a day," he said.
Strong winds and dry conditions meant teams of people were running around carrying whatever buckets they could find, back and forth from a water tank.
"The cow manure was lighting the fire back up," Mr Scrymgeour said.
"The fire would be out, and the wind would flare it up again."
He said he only remembers seeing his property as dry as this year only twice in 30 years.
"There's just fire mulch everywhere. Just litter everywhere," he said.
"The fire was going that fast along the ground it didn't go up the trees. If that'd happened the town would've gone. It could've been 10 times worse, but you have to not think about that."
The couple's three children, Josh, Joey and Jade, all aged in their 20s, arrived from as far away as Queensland on Monday to help the couple get back on their feet. Mr Scrymgeour said a long list of people have come to the aid of the family.
"All in all the kids coming really grounded me and got me going. It really helped their mother a lot," he said.
"It's only ever Easter and Christmas that we get to see them.
"Good can come from bad things."
The couple thanked firefighters, along with Cora Zwiep, Danielle Murphy, John Burgess, Ellie and Andrew from the Quaama General Store, Bowerbird Op-shop, the Cobargo Co-op, Allan Dummett and Mikhayla Jennings from Bermagui Bobcat, Stu Longhurst from Stu's Bobcat, Dave and Debbie Ross, Rory Brideson and neighbour Les Boyle who tackled the fire armed with just a wattle branch.
The couple were also helped by a group of people they have dubbed "The Tarny Army", consisting of Tarny Long, Blake Robinson, Kirsty Machon, Ryan Norris, Ashley King, Brad Jamieson, Michael Harrington and others.
"I'm calling Blake the general, and they just worked like soldiers," Mr Scrymgeour said with a laugh.
"There are countless members of the community offering to help out.
"We've been offered so much stuff but we don't have anywhere to put it."
Ms Murphy said the community is planning a fundraising event for the couple at the Cobargo School of Arts Hall.
Mr Scrymgeour said the region's bushfires have shown major towns should have a number of paid rural firefighters.
"The volunteers did a great job, but it should be their paid job and they should be trained up," he said.
"Compare it to the lifesavers at the beach. It should be set up like that so there can be paid people and volunteers.
"I think the world of the volunteers and all the effort they put in."
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